The 33-year-old Swiss star is more than 3,000 points behind top-ranked Novak Djokovic, but he did have the satisfaction of defeating the Serb in straight sets in the Shanghai semi-finals.
Rafael Nadal moves down to third in the rankings with Australian Open champion Stan Wawrinka staying at fourth despite an early exit in China to Gilles Simon.
The Frenchman went on to reach the final where he lost to Federer and that was enough to hoist him up 11 places to 18th.
ATP world rankings:
- Novak Djokovic (SRB) 12,510
- Roger Federer (SUI) 9,080 (+1)
- Rafael Nadal (ESP) 8,105 (-1)
- Stan Wawrinka (SUI) 5,385
- David Ferrer (ESP) 4,585
- Kei Nishikori (JPN) 4,355
- Tomas Berdych (CZE) 4,325
- Marin Cilic (CRO) 3,945 (+1)
- Milos Raonic (CAN) 3,885 (-1)
- Grigor Dimitrov (BUL) 3,745
- Andy Murray (GBR) 3,635
- Jo-Wilfried Tsonga (FRA) 2,705
- Ernests Gulbis (LAT) 2,465
- Feliciano LOpez (ESP) 2,060 (+7)
- John Isner (USA) 1,970 (-1)
- Roberto Bautista (ESP) 1,935 (+2)
- Kevin Anderson (RSA) 1,875 (-1)
- Gilles Simon (FRA) 1,810 (+11)
- Fabio Fognini (ITA) 1,790 (-2)
- Gaël Monfils (FRA) 1,735 (-5)